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There is growing interest in the applications of artificial intelligence (AI) in the agri-food sector, to extract or exploit the information in datasets resulting from the monitoring of products and processes. Artificial intelligence algorithms, and the models derived from them, are used as support systems for better decision making or, in some cases, are implemented in automatic control processes and robotics, to alleviate drudgery. In this study, sensing and data collection in different agri-food ...

The European Union is committed to achieving climate neutrality by 2050, which requires a drastic increase in the share of energy from renewable sources in the electricity mix. However, the availability of some renewable energy sources is variable and intermittent, creating concerns about system reliability. Devising new energy storage capacities could solve this issue and contribute to the EU's climate neutrality goal.

This study explores the main impacts of the smart city transition on our cities and, in particular, on citizens and territories. In our research, we start from an analysis of smart city use cases to identify a set of key challenges, and elaborate on the main accelerating factors that may amplify or contain their impact on particular groups and territories. We then present an account of best practices that can help mitigate or prevent such challenges, and make some general observations on their scalability ...

The European Commission plans to launch its revised EU pharmaceutical package in the first quarter of 2023. Ahead of its release, two recent STOA studies offer insight to inform upcoming Parliamentary discussions. Fragmentation of EU health research and development, lack of transparency and a translation gap between public investment and clinical output are among the weaknesses identified. Possible solutions include the creation of large-scale European biomedical infrastructure, and a series of targeted ...

What if we grew plants vertically?

At a Glance 15-12-2022

By 2050, an estimated two thirds of the world population will live in urban areas. Could vertical farming help feed this growing urban population sustainably by reducing the demand for agricultural land and shortening the travel distance between food production and consumption?

Quantum technologies could be a game-changer in the digital transformation of health care. By enabling much faster and more complex data analysis, they could open the door to the accelerated discovery and development of novel therapeutics, improved diagnostics and treatments, including for rare and complex diseases, genuinely personalised medicine, and better data-driven health policy planning. However, as is also the case in other sectors, quantum technologies come with risks, particularly to cybersecurity ...

Antimicrobial-resistant infections are predicted to become the second biggest cause of death worldwide by 2050. Despite increasing investment in the development of new antimicrobials, awareness campaigns on antimicrobial misuse and abuse, and monitoring of antimicrobial use and resistance in animals, humans and the environment, antimicrobial resistance continues to grow and the last three decades have not seen even one novel antimicrobial class reach the market. Could the answer lie in a 'Trojan ...

The Russian invasion has caused huge destruction of life and property in Ukraine. Reconstruction will be a long and costly process, and the EU and others are already marshalling funds for this effort. Some EU leaders have expressed support for using frozen Russian central bank (RCB) funds towards reconstruction, but it is unclear if this will actually happen. There are recent examples of sovereign assets being confiscated and used to compensate victims of injustice, but the confiscation of Russia's ...

The COVID 19 pandemic prompted reinforced investment in health research, to support rapid research and innovation for vaccine development and health care measures. The European Union response highlighted strengths and weaknesses in EU research organisation and funding. Over time, EU investment in health research has been aimed at increasing knowledge and transfer of knowledge into innovation, for better health. To this end, several instruments have been developed, but the impact of these efforts ...

This study examines how contemporary welfare state policies address the issues of inequality and poverty both between and within EU Member States. It combines quantitative and qualitative analysis to show the strong links between inequality and poverty, not only in statistical terms, but also in terms of wealth distribution, intergenerational mobility and labour market dynamics. Welfare states are discussed in a multidimensional way, covering traditional welfare state policies on social protection ...